5 finalists for the 2011 National Book Award for Young People's Literature (with one title dropped)

3. "Inside Out and Back Again," by Thanhha Lai


(Harper) Saigon is the only home young Ha has ever known. But it's 1975 and the Communists are coming closer, the Americans have mostly left, and bombs can be heard outside the city. Schools close and schoolmates disappear. Food becomes scarce. The family must leave – now – for America. "Inside Out and Back Again" is "the classic immigration tale, powerfully and beautifully shared by an authentic narrator who lived the story," wrote Monitor reviewer Augusta Scattergood. "Although written for young readers, the spare free verse of 'Inside Out and Back Again' will appeal to a much larger audience."

(Monitor review of "Inside Out and Back Again," 7/6/11)

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